Pizza restaurant exhibition leads to worldwide deal

GOING GLOBAL Artist Dominic Joyce from Milton with the piece of artwork which is now being sold in Ikea. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (13211-3)

GOING GLOBAL Artist Dominic Joyce from Milton with the piece of artwork which is now being sold in Ikea. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (13211-3)

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A MAN who has dedicated most of his life his art is getting recognition on a global scale.

Dominic Joyce, of Milton, has been a full-time artist since 2005, selling his work through the website etsy.com and through his own site.

But a chance exhibition in a restaurant led to him being spotted by Swedish home furnishing giant Ikea, and now his work is being sold in their shops all around the world.

The deal came about when he was asked to provide the Pizza Express restaurant in Petersfield with some artwork to exhibit to the diners.

Dominic, 39, said: ‘People would go into the restaurant and buy the art.

‘I’d had some scans made of the pieces, because of course once they were sold they’d be gone forever.

‘But I got some prints made and I sold them online and in the market in Portsmouth, and they were selling pretty well and seemed pretty popular.’

But one day an email dropped in his inbox via the etsy website, from someone claiming to be a buying agent working on behalf of Ikea, saying she was interested in one of his prints.

Damien said: ‘I immediately thought it was spam and nearly deleted it, but I realised there was no request for money.

‘I showed it to my business adviser, who did some research and said the woman who emailed me was who she claimed to be.

‘I replied to her saying I was interested and she sent me back an image of the print she was interested in and a copy of the contract.

‘I’ve had to keep quiet about it for about a year, but now I can tell everyone.’

Damien’s art is inspired by graffiti, fashion and street art, as well as pop art.

His work wasn’t due to be sold in the Ikea shops until next month, but he discovered quite by chance that it was already on display.

‘My girlfriend went to the Ikea in Southampton one day and saw it on display. Since they are there I can tell everyone about it.’

The work is called Kayla London, and is available in the UK, America, Europe, the Middle East and India.

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